Which one do you have?
So you got your dream job. Fun environment, great pay and you’re super lucky that your cube is nearest to the cappuccino machine. All is finally well in your professional life except the most important thing- You have a crap manager. All of your ideal career checklist can be marked off except how you feel about your boss. What many young professionals don’t realize is your direct supervisor can make all the difference on your outlook about your company, position and your future career plans. Spotting a good and bad manager may not be as obvious as you think. Luckily I have survived everything from being micromanaged to screamed at over ham sandwiches – all so I can help you find a great manager today!
The Manager from Hell:
The bad manager takes many forms. It’s up to you to spot their tale signs and maneuver right around them. Working with the bad manager can help you evolve into a better leader by learning from their mistakes.
- Dumps all of their work on you – Have you ever seen those super busy higher ups that don’t have the time to actually work? Yup, that’s a bad manager.
- Is basically a figment of your imagination– How often do you actually see your boss? Do you even remember what they look like? A bad manager often has “invisible” work hours and stays away from the office as much as possible.
- Dictator not a leader– A great leader listens more than they speak. They want to know how their employees feel. The bad manager doesn’t see input from their employees as critical to their growth as a leader.
- Passes the buck on you– When everything goes great, they take the credit. When things go bad, it’s your entire fault. The not so great manager uses their employees as a scape goat for their poor leadership.
- Doesn’t believe in you– A manager that believes in your skills and potential is necessary to your career confidence. Bad managers don’t celebrate your strengths and don’t make the time to work on your weaknesses.
Quick tip: If you are interviewing for a new job, always ask the person who would be your manager about their management style. Take it a step further and ask how they feel about their supervisor’s management practices. If this is an existing job, try working in some feedback for your manager on your scheduled performance review.
The Manager from Heaven:
The good manager is rare. Many managers don’t take the time to actually learn the skills to be a fantastic leader.
- Inspiring and encouraging– The good manager is an example to their employees. They work hard and encourage others to do so by being a role model.
- Relatable and humble– Sad but true, sometimes power brings out the worst in managers. The bad manager radiates office aristocracy while the good manager makes sure everyone is comfortable speaking openly with them.
- Encourages growth and challenge– Opposite the bad manager, this style of manager will see opportunities for their team members to grow. Even if they feel unsure about attempting something challenging, they are encouraged and empowered to try.
- Puts the work in– You can see a good manager’s work ethic and contributions. In turn, they help their employees understand where hard work and dedication can get you.
- States their expectations clearly and helps you get there– A good manager makes their goals very clear. Communication is transparent and everyone is on the same page. They even offer support along the way.
Quick tip: The good manager helps you learn what kind of leader you want to be. Try taking note of things that make you feel great when interacting with your manager. Your favorite aspects may come in useful when you are managing several employees.